Back Ground Info...
I have been married 12 years with 4 children, 11, 9, 7, and 5. No affairs on either end, no EA either. Thank God.
. So far no real hiccups except one where I had to work a month of 12 hour days straight, right before Christmas two years ago. The final week, she told me she didn't love me and wanted out.
As per the typical reaction, I was shocked, hurt, and dumbfounded. The next day she said she was sorry and never meant any of it. She said she was only mad and hurt that she had to handle the kids and Christmas shopping by herself and was at the breaking point. At first I was (sort of) relieved that she was only furious at me working that much OT at that time(mandatory OT also), and nothing more than that.
At this moment I still do not believe her 100%completely, but her actions and story has not changed in that time either.
Since then we have gotten past that and have had a good marriage. Gone on dates again finally, once a month, ( its hell finding a babysitter for 4 young kids), and now have Monday afternoons by ourselves. We got out to new restaurants and just do the things we did back when we dated. Some days we make a whole afternoon of doing new things, sometimes we just do what we did when we dated, the point being its just us being together and having one on one time. We are enjoying this time immensely as we have not had this time in a number of years. She has just discovered she loves sushi in this new time, and we have been exploring this new world together. Its wonderful.
I came from a household of old fashioned values. Think Duck Dynasty here, without the COMPLETE ******* lol. My father was beyond Alpha Male, and my mother was a doting mother. I carried those values and behaviors into our marriage and feel it has served us well.
My wife came from a broken home, her grandmother raised her from a young age and is actually quite cold. I joke around and say she was the grandmother from the book Flowers in The Attic lol, my wife agrees most of the time. She does not like to touch hardly ever, never has, and I attribute that to her cold childhood. I am the one who usually reaches out to hold her hand, touch the small of her back, or curl up next to her in bed.
I have been on 3rd shift for the past 7 years, and have noticed a trend of changing behavior in her and I. With the kids ages, homework, and sporting activities, and me getting slightly older, working a high stress job, the time we do spend together is great, but the intimacy is almost slim to none. Maybe once a month. And what I mean by intimacy is where she gets into it, reciprocates sexually and emotionally. If I ask, its usually a 50/50 chance of being turned down. Despite that we usually have sex on average 2 to 3 times a week, a bad week maybe once. Usually its just duty booty, but hey, giving the situation with the kids and the shift I work, I will take what I can right now without complaining too much.
And before I get hammered here...keep in mind maybe the saying you cant see the forest through the trees is a perfect fit here, and maybe Im not seeing the bark on the trees either :scratchhead: I just feel a little lost, scared, and quite honestly panicky sometimes when the intimacy is not there for long periods of time.
I started to notice a change in myself too. I started to turn into the 'nice guy'. Smothering her and basically chasing her away. I did not see it in me at all, until I did a google search and found this website and realized just what the heck I was doing...
I took a long hard look in the mirror and did not like the reflection at all. I read NMMNG and have started subtle changes in myself. Most importantly the 180
It worked quite well, having her reach out to me 3 days in a row and initiate. I was amazed how well it works. :smthumbup:
I have always been Alpha, at work, play, but I seen the changes in myself and wanted to fix me before everything went past the breaking point.
The 180 is a wonderful start I have been trying to keep it in perspective too, it has been 5 days since she reached out to me, but it is a beginning. Baby steps...
I have been wondering how many people on the site work off shifts? Tips? Advice on anything you can come up with? Intimacy? Kids? What have you. How you handle the daily stresses of marriage, and the bumps along the way. How have your marriages been, success stories and the disaster stories too.
I know its long winded and all over the place so please, please bear with me. Im new at this.